This guide describes the information that HASH needs in order to process a DMCA takedown request. If you have more general questions about what the DMCA is or how HASH processes DMCA takedown requests, please review our DMCA Takedown Policy.
Due to the type of content HASH hosts (mostly simulation code and programming functions) and the way that content is managed (with Git and multilingual package managers), we need complaints to be as specific as possible. These guidelines are designed to make the processing of alleged infringement notices as straightforward as possible. Our form of notice set forth below is consistent with the form suggested by the DMCA statute, which can be found at the U.S. Copyright Office’s official website: https://www.copyright.gov.
As with all legal matters, it is always best to consult with a professional about your specific questions or situation. We strongly encourage you to do so before taking any action that might impact your rights. This guide isn’t legal advice and shouldn’t be taken as such.
Tell the Truth. The DMCA requires that you swear to the facts in your copyright complaint under penalty of perjury. It is a federal crime to intentionally lie in a sworn declaration. (See U.S. Code, Title 18, Section 1621.) Submitting false information could also result in civil liability — that is, you could get sued for money damages. The DMCA itself provides for damages against any person who knowingly materially misrepresents that material or activity is infringing.
Investigate. Millions of users and organizations pour their hearts and souls into the projects they create and contribute to on HASH. Filing a DMCA complaint against such a project is a serious legal allegation that carries real consequences for real people. Because of that, we ask that you conduct a thorough investigation and consult with an attorney before submitting a takedown to make sure that the use isn’t actually permissible.
Ask Nicely First. A great first step before sending us a takedown notice is to try contacting the user directly. They may have listed contact information on their public HASH Index profile page or in their publication’s README. This is not strictly required, but it is classy (see: Netflix‘s approach to cease and desists).
Send In The Correct Request. We can only accept DMCA takedown notices for works that are protected by copyright, and that identify a specific copyrightable work. If you have a complaint about trademark abuse, please see our trademark complaints policy. If you wish to remove sensitive data such as passwords, please see our policy on sensitive data. If you are dealing with defamation or other abusive behavior, please see our Community Guidelines.
Code Is Different From Other Creative Content. HASH is built for collaboration on simulations (which comprise software code). This makes identifying a valid copyright infringement more complicated than it might otherwise be for, say, photos, music, or videos.
There are a number of reasons why code is different from other creative content. For instance:
This list isn’t exhaustive, which is why speaking to a legal professional about your proposed complaint is doubly important when dealing with code.
No Bots. You should have a trained professional evaluate the facts of every takedown notice you send. If you are outsourcing your efforts to a third party, make sure you know how they operate, and make sure they are not using automated bots to submit complaints in bulk. These complaints are often invalid and processing them results in incorrectly taking down legitimate projects, and consequently risks civil damages claims.
Matters of Copyright Are Hard. It can be very difficult to determine whether or not a particular work is protected by copyright. For example, facts (including data) are generally not copyrightable. Words and short phrases are generally not copyrightable. URLs and domain names are generally not copyrightable. Since you can only use the DMCA process to target content that is protected by copyright, you should speak with a lawyer if you have questions about whether or not your content is protectable.
You May Receive a Counter Notice. Any user affected by your takedown notice may decide to submit a counter notice. If they do, we will re-enable their content within 10-14 days unless you notify us that you have initiated a legal action seeking to restrain the user from engaging in infringing activity relating to the content on HASH.
Your Complaint Will Be Published. As noted in our DMCA Takedown Policy, after redacting personal information, we publish all complete and actionable takedown notices at https://github.com/hashintel/dmca.
HASH Isn’t The Judge. HASH exercises little discretion in the process other than determining whether the notices meet the minimum requirements of the DMCA. It is up to the parties (and their lawyers) to evaluate the merit of their claims, bearing in mind that notices must be made under penalty of perjury.
The Copyright Act also prohibits the circumvention of technological measures that effectively control access to works protected by copyright. If you believe that content hosted on HASH violates this prohibition, please send us a report at [email protected], and include specific information about what content violates that prohibition, what technological measures you had in place, and why the content violates the prohibition.
The fastest way to get a response is to provide all the above information in the required format to [email protected]. You may include an attachment if you like, but please also include a plain-text version of your letter in the body of your message.
If you must send your notice by physical mail, you can do that too, but it will take substantially longer for us to receive and respond to it. Notices we receive via plain-text email have a much faster turnaround than PDF attachments or physical mail. If you still wish to mail us your notice, our physical address for notices can be found at hash.ai/legal